Seize opportunity of global slowdown, Jaitley asks companies

Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley delivers remarks at the Peterson Institute for International Economics April 16, 2015, in Washington, DC. AFP PHOTO/PAUL J. RICHARDS (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)

arun-jaitely-gst-tax-reuters_650x400_81448280899Terming the global slowdown as transient, the  Arun Jaitley on Friday asked the industry to seize the opportunity to expand their business and prepare themselves for better times.

“We are passing through transformational times and in these transformational times, those who have taken over the challenge, I think must seize this as a global opportunity,” Jaitley said while inaugurating the India International Footwear Fair in New Delhi.

The world is not doing well today at all, it is in a slowdown mode now, he said.

“Therefore with the globe not doing so well, global markets shrinking, some of the more advanced units, particularly in leather are facing challenge because of shrinkage of global markets, but that’s not an everlasting phenomenon. That could be a transient phenomenon, and even in that we have to seize the opportunity for ourselves,” he said.

Emphasising that India has potential particularly in non-leather footwear to become a world beater, he said, this is one industry that India is capable of finding core competence.

Over the last few years India has shown potential as far as services are concerned but for some reason the country missed out in manufacturing, he added.

The two big employment generator in the manufacturing sector are textile and apparel, and leather.

Highlighting various steps taken by the government, the Finance Minister said last four months have seen three very significant steps — Aadhaar law, Bankruptcy Code and the Goods and Services Tax (GST) law.

In the biggest tax reform since Independence, the Rajya Sabha on Wednesday approved the GST bill to replace a raft of different state and local taxes with a single unified value added tax system to turn the country into world’s biggest single market.

“These spate of changes are taking place, when the world is otherwise in a slowdown phase,” he said.